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Medicaid gets global grant to fight breast cancer

Medicaid Cancer Foundation has been selected with 10 other organisations from around the world for a $25,000 global grant to reduce metastatic breast cancer (MBC).…

Medicaid Cancer Foundation has been selected with 10 other organisations from around the world for a $25,000 global grant to reduce metastatic breast cancer (MBC).

Metastatic breast cancer (MBC) means the breast cancer has spread to other parts of the body such as the lungs, brain, liver and bones, and is the most advanced stage of the disease. There is currently no cure for MBC and treatment aims to prolong the survival of patients while preserving their quality of life.

An estimated 11,564 people died from breast cancer in  Nigeria in 2018.

The main challenges for metastatic breast cancer (MBC) patients in the country are limited access to quality cancer healthcare services, lack of financial support and weak support structures.

Medicaid, which was founded by Dr Zainab Shinkafi Bagudu, wife of Kebbi State governor, has been providing support to cancer patients across the country.

It has won local and international awards for its activities ranging from establishing cancer registries, support for research and training of experts as well as awareness creation on cancer, among others.

A statement from the foundation signed by the founder said it would receive up to $25,000 in seed-funding as part of the Seeding Progress and Resources for the Cancer Community: Metastatic Breast Cancer Challenge (SPARC MBC Challenge programme) an initiative of the Union for International Cancer Control  (UICC) supported by Pfizer Oncology.

The foundation will receive the seed funding alongside training, mentoring and the opportunity to attend key international cancer events to exchange best practices with other organisations from around the world, the statement said.

According to the statement , the SPARC MBC Challenge was launched in 2015 by UICC in partnership with Pfizer Oncology. It is a global grant initiative which supports projects worldwide aimed at addressing MBC patients’ specific needs to, ultimately, reduce the number of women diagnosed at an advanced stage of breast cancer locally.

President of UICC, Princess Dina Mired of Jordan said the organisation was proud to have supported the work of more than 50 organisations from five continents so they can improve the life of people living with MBC in their communities.

“We are deeply honoured to be one of the 11 cancer organisations across the world selected in 2019 to benefit from this programme and join the international SPARC network of more than 50 organisations. This is truly a great opportunity for us to increase our impact in ensuring that MBC patients in Nigeria get the attention they deserve,” Samuel Alabi of Medicaid Cancer Foundation said.


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